Above: Taylor Kerling (center) is joined by (left to right): Isabella Peralta (4th), 1st grade teacher Adam Ousley, art teacher Tia Cosgrave, Elise Schwartz (4th), music teacher Nina Delewski, and Reese Glenn (kindergarten). All dressed like Taylor for "Dress Like Your Teacher" day at Lorane.
Below: Taylor, when she was a Lorane student.
You might say that today’s “Dress Like Your Teacher Day” teacher appreciation spirit day was a full-circle moment for Taylor Kerling, who is a first-year teacher at Lorane–as well as a former Lorane student. “I honestly didn’t think this would happen,” said Taylor, blushing, surprised to see students who dressed like her, as well as teachers–including Nina Delewski who once taught Taylor. “To be a part of the Lorane family is one of the most amazing blessings.”
When we first caught up with Taylor to do a story on her return to Lorane now as a teacher, it didn’t take long for us to recognize Taylor’s authentic admiration and appreciation for Exeter teachers and how she says she owes her career to them. Taylor is Exeter. She’s a first-year Health & Physical Education Teacher at Lorane. She’s a 2017 alumnus. (Her mom is an alum, too.) And she says she owes her success thanks to the incredible and genuine care that Exeter teachers gave to her when she attended school here.
“I wanted to become a teacher to be to others what I experienced here in Exeter. I know that seems like a stereotypical answer, but it couldn’t be truer. I had such a great experience here in Exeter with teachers who taught me so much more than just the curriculum. They taught me how to be a good person. They helped me develop into a genuine and caring person. I had wonderful opportunities and had so much fun learning. By my junior year, I knew I wanted to be a teacher, and I knew I wanted to return to Exeter to teach.”
Her appreciation for those teachers, also, isn’t lost on those who had her as a student. Music teacher Nina Delewski dressed like Taylor today because she wanted to show her support for an “amazing” first-year teacher. “She fits in so nicely here because this is where she grew up,” adding that it was initially a little surreal working with a former student. “That’s a first for me!” she said.
One day soon, though, Taylor may find herself in the same position as Nina as she already seems to have a few students who showed their appreciation for Taylor by dressing like her, including Isabella Peralta (4th), Elise Schwartz (4th) and Reese Glenn (kindergarten). When we asked them what they wanted to be when they grew up, all three responded with an emphatic, “A gym teacher at Lorane like Miss K!”